Need to move away from Sprint -- looking for options...

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So my wife is still on her family's cell phone plan. They're with Sprint, and were paying around $160 for 4 lines (unlimited talk, text, and 10GB of data to share), which I believe was too much even before the issue we're having.  The bill keeps increasing every month. 

One person on the plan just got the S7, which is costing her around $27 a month I believe. The bill the following month was about $30 higher, which makes sense

So the last bill came in around $270. We called Sprint on numerous occasions, and have never received a callback (as promised) or answers on why the bill jumped so much. The bill is showing the cost of the S7, insurance (though she elected not to have it), and a tablet they're supposedly showing on the account (though we don't have a tablet on the account and never did).

I'm trying to get everyone to leave Sprint. Paying off the S7 isn't so much an issue as long as it can be used with the new carrier.

Two of the other phones on the plan are:
Galaxy S4 (Sprint branded - Originally from FreedomPop)
Galaxy S5 (Sprint branded) - less than $150 left on payment plan @ 15 per month
*I don't know the model of the 3rd phone but it is Sprint branded - around $130 left on payment plan @ $12 per month

There are a lot of MVNOs out there, but we're hoping to be able to use the current phones with a new carrier. I'm fairly certain Sprint will unlock them once they're paid off and they should be able to operate on CDMA networks, but GSM networks is uncertain. I was going to move them all to Ring+, but no one knows if they'll be in business a year from now. MetroPCS seems to have a nice promotion from time to time (2 lines unlimited talk + text + 6gb data), but I've heard mixed reviews on their service.

If you're getting your service from a MVNO, which are you using, and are you satisfied with the service? 

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Check out Ting. They use the Sprint network. I'm averaging $30 a month with 2 phones.

try prepaidphonenews.com for information. there are many Sprint mvno's if you are interested in staying with Sprint. ringplus comes to mind. and if they go out of business, move to a new carrier. i've been on rp for over a year with multiple lines. i'm pretty sure metropcs is not a Sprint compatible carrier.
it all depends on what kind of plan you're looking for.
redpocket on eBay offers $200/year plan that is 1000 voice/text/mb per month available on TMO, Verizon, ATT and Sprint.

Did you trying going to a Sprint store and ask? They should be able to help you out and adjust your rates to current promotions. If not then threaten to leave them. Better to have a face to face talk since at time calls are just routed to offshore customer service which might not offer best solution for you.

Check Cricket Wireless, if you need 5 lines. They have a plan for 5 lines, $100/Month including taxes and fees. Unlimited Talk, Text and 2.5 Gig data per line. I believe they are giving free phones and activation too, if you are from another career except AT & T. They use AT & T network and no contract.

Cricket is pretty much AT&T just cheaper, and DL speeds are a tad slower, check out the promo's.... You can ping on the thread here for current Cricket Customers can give you a ref of 25.00 for u and 25.00 for them so just ping someone for the ref link

Dil

As far as phone compatibility goes you can use something like http://www.gsmarena.com/ to figure out the exact specs of their phones. Just keep in mind there are often several versions of the same phone. Off hand I'd guess the Galaxy S4 is the following:

http://www.gsmarena.com/samsung_galaxy_s4_cdma-5388.php 

It should theoretically work on T-Mobile 's network but it is missing several key bands such as band 12 to support their extended range LTE. That will mean poorer coverage and probably slower speeds.

The S5 seems to be the following and is similarly limited.
http://www.gsmarena.com/samsung_galaxy_s5_(usa)-6338.php 

Keep in mind many carriers run "Switch" promos which include discounts on new phones and paying off the balance on the old phones so you'll need to compare the costs of that if you switch to one of the other major carriers. You'd have the best phone compatibility sticking with a Sprint MVNO and there are plenty of those if you want to go that route. When looking at MVNOs you need to be sure to look at people's usage patterns. Some MVNOs are great if you barely use your phone and just want the cheapest price possible with limited talk/text/data. Others are better if you use your phone more and want unlimited talk/text/data. There are also some planes with unique mixes such as t-mobiles plan with 100 talk minutes and unlimited text,5gb (throttled after that) data for $30 which would be good for someone who uses lots of data but not much talk time.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_United_States_mobile_virtual_network_operators

https://prepaid-phones.t-mobile.com/other-prepaid-plans

Total Wireless has 4 lines unlimited talk/text and 18gb data for $95 plus tax. Using Verizon, which has very good coverage.

why are you worried about the family plan let them get their own...get your own wireles service..and NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO contracts !!!

I would go for Ringplus. Just get new numbers if they go out of business.

esteinbrenner said:   ]It should theoretically work on T-Mobile 's network but it is missing several key bands such as band 12 to support their extended range LTE. That will mean poorer coverage and probably slower speeds.
 

  
In theory.  In practice, my Verizon Moto E running on Gosmart Mobile (T-Mobile network) does not have Band 12 either, but I'm almost always connected at LTE wherever I go.  I suppose in some rural areas I wouldn't get LTE without Band 12, but I've yet to encounter this in my travels.

ahallfatwallett said:   
esteinbrenner said:   ]It should theoretically work on T-Mobile 's network but it is missing several key bands such as band 12 to support their extended range LTE. That will mean poorer coverage and probably slower speeds.
  
In theory.  In practice, my Verizon Moto E running on Gosmart Mobile (T-Mobile network) does not have Band 12 either, but I'm almost always connected at LTE wherever I go.  I suppose in some rural areas I wouldn't get LTE without Band 12, but I've yet to encounter this in my travels.

  Coverage is always going to be YMMV but my experience says it does make a difference. I've got an iPhone 6s which does support all the T-Mobile bands and my wife has an older Sony android phone which doesn't have band 12. Last time we were heading to the coast she was complaining about lack of coverage while I was streaming music on my phone. Saw similar things once we got there.I had coverage and she didn't.

I went from an iPhone 5 to an iPhone 6S through T-Mobile and noticed a difference with band 12. Voice service didn't change much, just LTE had better coverage outside of the cities.


I just learned about Mint SIM today - it's running a "buy one get two months free" promo that ends in $35 for three months of unlimited talk and text. As a Ultra Mobile partner, it uses T-Mobile's network (a dealbuster for some).

For cost, Republic Wireless and Google's Project Fi (both approx $20/mo) will get you the same perks but each include data for more $$ (in the case of Project Fi, $10 per 1GB used).

If anyone in your family desires to call Mexico, Project Fi claims to work "uninterrupted" in "135 countries" and includes international texting.

I'm in the market for a new provider, also, having relocated 3,500 miles for a new job that everyone under the sun wants to discuss at the tune of 900 min/200 texts a month. I currently use Tracfone and have to keep purchasing cards for my triple minutes for life phone every two months to keep pace. Until now, I haven't spent more than $10/mo for cell service and miss those cheap days of never touching my phone...

Thank you everyone for your responses. We're probably going to start with Ring+. It's the easiest option right now, and no one will need to get new phones.

Question for Ring+ users....

For PAID plans (plans with top up as well as a monthly charge), do you hear ads when waiting for someone to pick up the phone. One of the people who will be signing up read about the ads, and is now hesitant. I checked the Ring+ webpage, but didn't find a clear answer....

Howie said:   Question for Ring+ users....

For PAID plans (plans with top up as well as a monthly charge), do you hear ads when waiting for someone to pick up the phone. One of the people who will be signing up read about the ads, and is now hesitant. I checked the Ring+ webpage, but didn't find a clear answer....

  No ads for paid plans.  Free plans used to have ads instead of a dial tone, but they weren't bad, usually just a song played while you waited for the call to go through.  The new free plans will require the use of a dialer app when it is introduced.



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